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Thread: The suicide shift

  1. #31
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    Re: The suicide shift

    Quote Originally Posted by *BaseClogger* View Post
    As soon as a player proves they can consistently beat the shift teams will stop shifting that player and force them to hit different pitches against a conventional defensive alignment. It takes a very, very talented hitter to be productive under both scenarios...
    The skills needed to beat the shift are to be able to hit to all fields. That works against any defense.

    But even if what you say is accurate, it would mean the end of the shift, which would be fine by me, even if it leads to lower offense.
    “We’re going to get the pitching.” -Bob Castellini
    “You got the pitching, now what?” - Reds fans


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  3. #32
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    Re: The suicide shift

    Quote Originally Posted by westofyou View Post
    As the Rays announcers said last night, the shift reduces double plays (a traditional goal to squelch offense) but it heightens the chance to obtain an out in a game that values outs, thus devaluing the double play. Add in the batters going full three outcome and the game is stifled of its allure (action)

    Addressing that reality is not going against the games traditions as the rules have changed plenty, often to address a deficiency of either offense, pitching or defense. Sure the play of the game sometimes adjusts itself and sometimes a rule change prods that change but chances are in today's environment that change wouldn't be something that would occur in a generation. If you want to address shifts then zone the field in a way that that doesn't allow weighted defense in the extreme. Each player has a zone that they have to SET up in, they don't have to patrol it allow, but have to start from within that zone. Try it out in the AFL or MIL, chances are it increases hits, awards line drives and creates action on the offensive side of the ball.
    EXTREME LIKE

    Also, I am not old enough to recall 1968, but, yeah, baseball can make these kinds of rule changes that impact the game...
    Well, that's what those words mean. He was here. If they don't keep him, he will have been lost/subtracted. I headed out the door today with two shoes on my feet. If I don't return with them, I have lost them. If I do return with them, I haven't added them. ---M2

  4. #33
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    Re: The suicide shift

    By the way, it occurs to me the shenanigans that MLB has been engaged in with juicing the ball over the last few years has been MLB's effort to help off-set the loss of traditional offense because of the shift. Kind of a "fine, you want to shift, we will quietly help players hit it father to counter-balance". It crosses my mind MLB could try exactly what WOY suggested and stop messing with the ball and see what kind of games you get.
    Well, that's what those words mean. He was here. If they don't keep him, he will have been lost/subtracted. I headed out the door today with two shoes on my feet. If I don't return with them, I have lost them. If I do return with them, I haven't added them. ---M2

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  6. #34
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    Re: The suicide shift

    I hear what you guys are saying, but if you know a guy always gets hits in to shallow RCF, your not allowed to play a guy there? You just have to let him have his way? Doesn't sound like a competitive sport to me. Lets just eliminate fielders completely. Zone the field and if the ball lands in certain zones, you are safe and if it's in others, you are out. Some zones will be doubles and some zones will be triples. That's basically what would end up happening anyway unless the fielder makes an error. That way you could load up on hitters to add offense because you wouldn't have to worry about their defense. Make 9 DHs and a pitcher on every team.
    "All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it." --BABE RUTH

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  8. #35
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    Re: The suicide shift

    Quote Originally Posted by JFLegal View Post
    it's awful for the game. do you disagree? if so, why?
    Thanks for asking, and I really don't disagree.

    What I disagree with is creating rules that impact the game to that degree. The more you do that, the more the game morphs into something it was never intended to be. I prefer it be self-correcting. If clubs put value on hitters that can go to all fields, guess what? Hitters will learn to go to all fields and clubs will find them. I realize it won't change overnight. If you make rules, those rules usually don't get removed and if you make those rules and then the game changes again, do you make more rules?

    Take a look at the NFL. They have scrutinized the rule for what a catch is to the degree that few can truly define it, or it takes five paragraphs. And even though there's replay they still get the call wrong too many times. Those rules will never go away. Too bad. If you restrict how baseball defenses can align, how do you police that? Are players supposed to stop at a certain line? How do you define the line? Where does the infield stop and the outfield begin? In a regular infield alignment, what happens if a shortstop makes a heck of a play to grab a grounder on the right field side of 2nd base? Is the runner considered safe even though the shortstop threw him out? It's a Pandora's box that should remain closed, imo.

    The game is always changing. This shift will change too. Whitey Herzog and the Cardinals built a team around speed, speed, speed. They got on base and ran and played a lot of small ball! They won a WS and two pennants doing it. That changed. The stolen base is all but forgotten. Now it's the long ball and launch angles and exit velocity. The shift was created in large part because hitters are paid to crush the ball. There's more power when you pull the ball. Hence the shift. If players learn to spray the ball, sure there will be fewer home runs, but also fewer shifts. It all depends on what's valued.

    I know we live in a "gotta have it now" world, but the game is 100+ years old, let it self correct. The game will be better for it. There are plenty of opinions and arguments on both sides. That's mine.

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  10. #36
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    Re: The suicide shift

    Quote Originally Posted by mth123 View Post
    I hear what you guys are saying, but if you know a guy always gets hits in to shallow RCF, your not allowed to play a guy there? You just have to let him have his way? Doesn't sound like a competitive sport to me. Lets just eliminate fielders completely. Zone the field and if the ball lands in certain zones, you are safe and if it's in others, you are out. Some zones will be doubles and some zones will be triples. That's basically what would end up happening anyway unless the fielder makes an error. That way you could load up on hitters to add offense because you wouldn't have to worry about their defense. Make 9 DHs and a pitcher on every team.
    I don't know that my proposal goes to where OFers can stand, I would be happy with just limiting infielders to two on each side of second when pitch is thrown.
    Well, that's what those words mean. He was here. If they don't keep him, he will have been lost/subtracted. I headed out the door today with two shoes on my feet. If I don't return with them, I have lost them. If I do return with them, I haven't added them. ---M2

  11. #37
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    Re: The suicide shift

    By the way - 13 of the 17 runs today so far scored due to homeruns.
    Well, that's what those words mean. He was here. If they don't keep him, he will have been lost/subtracted. I headed out the door today with two shoes on my feet. If I don't return with them, I have lost them. If I do return with them, I haven't added them. ---M2

  12. #38
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    Re: The suicide shift

    To answer the OP...I imagine some hard swung bats might be accidentally slipping from the batters hands a lot

  13. #39
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    Re: The suicide shift

    Quote Originally Posted by Ironman92 View Post
    To answer the OP...I imagine some hard swung bats might be accidentally slipping from the batters hands a lot
    Only drives ratings up. Good for the game.

  14. #40
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    Re: The suicide shift

    I don’t see the self-correction happening beyond the current HR emphasis. Because managers aren’t interested in the aesthetics of baseball. They want to win. And the analytics are telling them to go for the long ball.

    The Reds may modify their approach - their extreme long ball emphasis failed. But I doubt most teams will see a need to reduce the emphasis on power hitting.

    For fans against changing the game - the physical ability of pitchers and the use of shifts have changed it. Some modifications of the rules would serve to preserve it.
    Last edited by Kc61; 10-15-2020 at 12:21 PM.

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    malcontent (10-15-2020)

  16. #41
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    Re: The suicide shift

    Quote Originally Posted by RedsBrick View Post
    Thanks for asking, and I really don't disagree.

    What I disagree with is creating rules that impact the game to that degree. The more you do that, the more the game morphs into something it was never intended to be. I prefer it be self-correcting. If clubs put value on hitters that can go to all fields, guess what? Hitters will learn to go to all fields and clubs will find them. I realize it won't change overnight. If you make rules, those rules usually don't get removed and if you make those rules and then the game changes again, do you make more rules?

    Take a look at the NFL. They have scrutinized the rule for what a catch is to the degree that few can truly define it, or it takes five paragraphs. And even though there's replay they still get the call wrong too many times. Those rules will never go away. Too bad. If you restrict how baseball defenses can align, how do you police that? Are players supposed to stop at a certain line? How do you define the line? Where does the infield stop and the outfield begin? In a regular infield alignment, what happens if a shortstop makes a heck of a play to grab a grounder on the right field side of 2nd base? Is the runner considered safe even though the shortstop threw him out? It's a Pandora's box that should remain closed, imo.

    The game is always changing. This shift will change too. Whitey Herzog and the Cardinals built a team around speed, speed, speed. They got on base and ran and played a lot of small ball! They won a WS and two pennants doing it. That changed. The stolen base is all but forgotten. Now it's the long ball and launch angles and exit velocity. The shift was created in large part because hitters are paid to crush the ball. There's more power when you pull the ball. Hence the shift. If players learn to spray the ball, sure there will be fewer home runs, but also fewer shifts. It all depends on what's valued.

    I know we live in a "gotta have it now" world, but the game is 100+ years old, let it self correct. The game will be better for it. There are plenty of opinions and arguments on both sides. That's mine.
    Part of the reason the Herzog approach worked was the amount of multi use stadiums that were all around the game. Astroturf and huge outfields, that's a main driver in that innovation. That was a reaction to the environment. Just like today's small parks with tiny foul areas and fans on top of the action is driving grip and rip approaches are a reaction to the environment. Now, chances are we are a ways from a new stadium design and that coupled with the shift and the three outcome payoff we might be seeing this game for awhile

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    Ron Madden (10-14-2020)

  18. #42
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    Re: The suicide shift

    I know there are many, many articles out there about the shift. They're all interesting. This one suggests that going the other way isn't really necessary to beat the shift. It does point out there's really no need to devise rules against it though as teams/players are figuring it out on their own. I guess we'll see where the trends take it.

    https://fivethirtyeight.com/features...-on-their-own/

  19. #43
    malingered here too long malcontent's Avatar
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    Re: The suicide shift

    Quote Originally Posted by membengal View Post
    I don't know that my proposal goes to where OFers can stand, I would be happy with just limiting infielders to two on each side of second when pitch is thrown.
    That's where I am. It's not rocket science.
    Everything is perfect, but there is a lot of room for improvement. --- Shunryu Suzuki-roshi

  20. #44
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    Re: The suicide shift

    Draw an invisible, straight line from home plate through second base to the center-field wall.

    Two infielders must start the play on each side of that line and at least one outfielder on each side of that line.

    Teams might even be forced to employ players who can play and field the infield again. Guys who aren't necessarily rip-and-grip. Could really impact the aesthetics of the game in several ways.
    Last edited by CaiGuy; 10-15-2020 at 11:31 AM.

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  22. #45
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    Re: The suicide shift

    even joey votto, one of the most cerebral hitters the game has ever seen, has not been able to "adjust" to the extreme shift.

    i just don't think it's one of those things that will "correct itself" or it already would have.

    still not sure i've heard a good argument against having "zones" that defensive players must be in when the pitch is thrown. that is the solution IMO.

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    malcontent (10-15-2020),membengal (10-15-2020)


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